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Do I Unfriend My Ex’s Family on Social Media?

no contactDear Chump Lady,

My “husband” of almost 20 years was having an affair. I put a GPS on his car, revealing all kinds of deception, including a partial lease with his buddies of a luxury apartment. Gambling thousands of dollars, lying, etc. Now he’s playing super dad to our younger daughter. My 18 year old is not as complicit to his behavior. Now after over a year, the girlfriend is completely on the scene.

My question is: do I unfriend his side of the family on FaceBook? I just saw a post from his aunt with the family reunion, the girlfriend included in a photo. I am not sure if I maintain those FB relationships or just eliminate.

P.S. We’re in the final throes of divorce.

Unfriend Me


Dear Unfriend Me,

The general consensus is that you lose your ex’s family when you divorce. There are some exceptions, of course. But the ol’ blood is thicker than fuckwittery usually holds true. This is their son, nephew, sibling and they aren’t going to cut him off because he’s a creep to you.

Flip side of that is that they’re stuck with him. And whoever he brings as his plus-one. (Plus two, twelve…. it can be a rotating cast of characters.) They’re going to suck it up and probably gossip about it later.

You don’t control that. Just like you couldn’t control his cheating or his profligate spending (those are yours, OW. No tag backs!) You just control you.

So you get to decide who is worthy to be in your life and who is a waste of space. I know it’s very painful to sever relationships of decades and be excluded where you once were family. But consider the quality of the relationship. Also consider your sanity — do you need a portal into his family’s life?

I vote No. You do not. The fastest way to heal is no contact. Focus on getting through this divorce and rebuilding your life. That means willing yourself to not look back at him or the OW. (Otherwise known as “pain shopping.”)

Sometimes chumps peek at Facebook and such for a hit of Schadenfreude. Oh look, he’s bald and gained 40 lbs. OMG Schmoopie is poured into those capri leggings. Whatever. You’re human, but it’s not helping clear your mental real estate.

More likely, you’re going to find oodles of curated impression management. Filtered Schmoopie in ambient lighting. FW posing in front of a car he doesn’t own. Smiles everyone, smiles…

And you’ll feel like “Why does he get to be deliriously happy and I’m stuck home with my cat and a pile of legal bills?”

Answer: You’re authentic. He isn’t. Flip the channel.

Really. You don’t have to tune into the Fuckwit Hour. And that goes for his family.

Back to your question — should you unfriend them? Would that hurt their feelings? Consider your feelings. It’s not their fault they’re related to a jerk. But if no one has reached out to you or checked in or asked how you’re doing during this cluster — I’d say yes. Go ahead, or at least unfollow. Or get off social media all together.

The Schmoopie Show is only as good as its ratings. Don’t tune in.

Ask Chump Lady

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  • I left everyone behind, even the ones I liked — his/mutual friends and family. I will emphasize CL’s point of considering your sanity — do you need a portal into his life in any way? No, no you do not. Leave that shit behind.

      • As a different point of view, here is what I did…

        I unfriended all of his family once I saw they were 100% behind him and accepting of her. No point in pain shopping and I was in DEEP pain already.

        Fair warning – this is a bit petty…As the years went on, about 8 years later, I realized I could have a bit of fun on social media. AP was not allowed to attend any events from my kids lives (like births of grandchildren or their birthday parties). I had some fabulous photos of me that included my ex looking like one big happy family which I posted publicly. I know his family and AP saw those photos.

        Not meh for sure and some will say a waste of my mental space but I’m not judging my actions. After all the crap I’ve survived, this gives me a tiny bit of revenge pleasure. Please don’t judge me either!

        • It’s tempting isn’t it? I follow a friend of my sister, a photographer, on Facebook. Last night she posted photos from a recent wedding she did…guess who…I literally did not recognize him, was just thinking “that geezer is too old to be getting married!” He was marrying #2 after the AP, and D day with him was 15 years ago so it was not upsetting, just funny, but I was sorely tempted to post in the comments “Third time’s a charm” etc!

        • We are human, and we (most of us) will always bear scars. Taking a little pleasure from little things does not hurt.

          I don’t even think it affect/effects meh status, unless it causes you pain.

        • No judgement here Rebecca. What goes around comes around, serves her right!

          The OW in my case had already blocked me initially in the midst of their affair but after D Day, she got a person she knew to send me pictures of her, my ex and my son, just like ‘one happy family’.

          To cause distress and oooh look what I won, presumably.

          I hope they get theirs one day. Not very meh of me. Not there yet.

        • I see revenge is bad never, ever do anything that might be a consequence all the time. Bullshit!!!!
          Revenge is great if it’s well planned and executed.
          Doormats live to get walked on.

    • Same – I have unfriended everyone connected to him, everyone I met through him, everyone who’s still friendly with him, etc. I refuse to risk any exposure.

  • I blocked all of them, their spouses and even their friends so they could have no access. They were all as shallow and clueless and sociopathic as he was. The connection was never good and I often noted to myself how gossip was the only glue that kept them together. Good riddance.

    • I also blocked them all. I had seen how ultra drama fused his Sister n law had been with her own Sons relationships and I had never cared for her to much as a person from the beginning. His family seemed to enjoy focusing on my ex’s past silly mistakes rather than on his accomplishments in life . As though they applauded the dirty dog stuff he did. His serial cheating and all else cost him a 20 plus year marriage and when I said I was done it meant done with the lot of them so I could move on in life.

  • I got off social media all together. It helped with my overall well being. He was and is super popular on social and still get tons of ‘like’. I’d never trade my few ‘loves’ from kids and friends IRL.

  • Sidecar addition: Social media is currently so interwoven into so many lives that it has become easy to forget what it is and what it is not.

    Social media is not life.

    Social media is not the only way people can know each other, connect with each other, or reach out to each other.

    It’s just a media presentation. It’s not life.

    I suggest unfriending AND blocking anyone who doesn’t need to be in your life. If they want to maintain contact, including to be in contact with your children, they’ll find you again and do so. I’m sure there are many ways for them to do that. And in the meantime, you won’t have the constant prodding of your wounds that social media so effectively prods, and nobody will be stealth-following your media (not easily, anyway — assume people have friends and watch what you post!) all the time, either.

    Oh, yeah, and the public internet is two things at a minimum, (1) public, and (2) FOREVER. Social media isn’t a private diary. It is, and should always be treated as, a 24-hour public media presentation that is instantly and permanently archived more places than we know.

    Ditch those meanies and go for a walk in the woods. Life is in the world!

    (Off soapbox!)

    • This is always important to remind ourselves of this, agreed. Social media is not actual life. Not their social media and not our social media.

    • ^^^^^^^^^ This is so true. We actually used to pick up a phone that was connected to a cord in the wall. If someone made you angry you could slam the phone down. Those suckers were tough. Now they get cracks on their screens if you slam them down.
      Just trying to say no matter how techy we get we still need people, in person. Social media(what a sweet sound for something so intrusive) is not necessary in your life. I enjoyed one until I realized that every single person was after my money through being “Influencers” so I am now reading instead of believing all these people had perfect lives.

  • Just yesterday I heard someone on a podcast refer to social media posts as a form of “personal advertisement”. I liked that succinct definition. We all know advertising can be manipulative and deceptive at times. And it can be effective.

    Why risk your own mental peace for a FW’s ( or their family’s) false advertising? Even with the people in the family you may have liked you can “detach with love”. I had a sister-in-law that I really liked, 15 years later I have not seen her but still feel warmly toward her and I hope she to me. I ask the kids about her every now and again. But it was best for my recovery to let go.

    None of this is easy but it does get easier. Listen to CL – she won’t steer you wrong.

    • Same here. My ex sister in law and I have maintained contact off and on through the years. Not in a real close way, but she treated me well during and after the discard.

      I was the one that called her and told her her brother was seriously ill, and not expected to live. My son was going through a lot at the time, with all that and recovering from Covid; he asked me if I could do it. I had no issue with it.

      We talked a while and caught up. I gave her my sons phone number for texting, and they connected from there. It was easier for him to text than talk.

  • Yes, sadly, usually the FW’s family has to be put far, far behind you as well. Otherwise you open yourself up to years of painful photos of the FW/OW on social media while you wonder “Why are they accepting her with open arms? Don’t they care that she’s a mistress?”

    “Blood is thicker than fuckwittery” holds absolutely true. One of the last things my former in-laws said to me was “you’ll always be our DIL.” There were hugs and tears. Months after that I found out that they were planning on taking FW, his new OW, and my children out on a family vacation to a place I always wanted to go to. FW and I weren’t even divorced yet. OW’s child began to spend entire summers with them. Their calls to me had stopped. I knew that not only had FW replaced me, his family had replaced me too.

    It broke my heart but I understood their position. FW is their son. In the end, they are going to stand by him and whomever he’s currently attached to. I began to quietly distance myself from FW’s family after that. No social media. No contact. I don’t need to see the pictures. I don’t want to hear how much they love her. I never rallied against them or messaged them or said anything bad about any of them. I just quietly withdrew; I don’t need to invite any drama.

    Yeeeeaaars after that I found myself, after a long time of NC with the former in-laws, in the unavoidable position where I had to pick up my kids from their house. It was an emotional nightmare for me but the whole event could not be helped. I was polite, they seemed pleased to see me after so long, I brought food for them (I was raised to always bring a gift of food when you are visiting someone’s place), and they wanted to give me a short tour of their new home since it had been so long since we had all been together. I felt nervous and awkward but I thought I could do it.

    I got one room into the tour. One room. The first room had a ton of large framed photos of FW, Wifetress, and their blended family (which included my kids, of course). Also unavoidably front and center: photos of FW and Wifetress cuddling and staring at the camera. Large photos. Prominently displayed on the mantelpiece. My brain short circuited and the flight part of fight or flight kicked in. I said that I appreciated the tour but I was already way behind schedule, grabbed my kids, thanked my former in-laws for their time/wished them well and noped right out of there. I’ve never been back again. Those photos and, more so, what they represent (his parents’ enthusiastic endorsement of Wifetress) set me back. After years of building myself up and crawling out of that pit (all chumps know that pit) I felt pushed right back in again. It took me weeks, heck, maybe even a few months to recover.

    And that’s why I continue to go NC and no social media with FW’s family. It is for my own protection. Like CL said, I do not need a portal into FW’s life or to see how much everyone endorses Wifetress. It’s a trigger for depression and not something I’ll willingly invite into my life, if it can be helped. I understand his family’s position and don’t begrudge them it but No Contact is an absolute blessing.

    It is hard to lose that extended family. I get it. But consider what will keep you sane and what won’t.

    • Fourleaf, I shudder to think how awful of your former in-laws to insist on that tour! Zero empathy. Nut didn’t fall far from the tree?

      • I agree. How insensitive of them! They knew you were coming. Either don’t offer a tour or quickly remove those photos. Yeesh. Some people.

    • For them to not understand how hurtful that could be to you is confirmation that you are doing the right thing by letting all of them go. Some people are so adamant about everybody just “getting along” that individual people are not even seen. Good riddance to that superficiality. You definitely do not need people like this in your life when you have been through what you have been through.

    • What they did was borderline sociopathic or at the very least with zero empathy. Who the fuck wouldn’t understand how traumatic that would be for you?? Unreal.

      I often toy with the idea of visiting my ex in-laws who I haven’t seen in over 16 years…but then I remember how they treated me throughout my marriage and after their son betrayed me, and I bitchslap myself into reality. No thanks.

    • Fourleaf, others have said it already but I feel compelled to add more than just a thumbs up…that in-law family is evil. They may appear harmless and friendly, but that’s what makes them truly evil. A tour? Right. They knew exactly what they were doing to you. Their interior decorating is like a Fakebook page unto themselves. Internal image management and make-believe which they were excited to subject you to. NO ONE would not know it’s likely effect on you, and that was the point. It was not innocent. It was “look at us without you”. But the imagery was typical of a narcissistic family system. When you’re not there, the message to themselves is “You’re Fine! You’re Even Superior! You’re Not Actually POS! Look, You’re Happy and Appear to have Normal Human Connections!” They desperately wanted you to see this. In fact they need it. The life’s blood of a family like this is obtaining the remotest plausable belief that they have convinced the outside that they are something special. What they know to be true is suppressed and unimportant. It’s what they can convince themselves that they convinced others of that matters to them. Your ex is the same way exactly. The source of your his character deficiencies is plain to see.

      • Thanks all for the support. The “once in a blue moon” visit to the in-laws’ place was years ago now and I’ve done the work needed to get back on track. For the record, I don’t think they’re evil and I don’t think they had a plot ready to go to destroy me emotionally or anything like that. I do honestly think that they were excited for me to see their new home since I had never been there before. As to all they happy family photographs in their livingroom, I don’t think they were cunningly arranged just to do damage to me. They adore their son and Wifetress and that’s how they decorate. I have photos up of people I adore too.

        It would have been nice, yes, if they had thought to take those down before I arrived but honestly, I don’t speak to them and haven’t spoken to them in years and continue not to speak to them. All they know about me is what FW tells them and he likely tells them what they’d like to believe: that everything is “all in the past.” So, I think they’re just clueless, honestly, like so many other people we meet out there who just don’t get the trauma of being chumped and dumped; something along the lines of “oh gosh, it’s been over a decade; we’re all over this by now (etc).”

        No, I don’t think they’re evil. I think they don’t get it. FW “doesn’t get it” either, so in that, you’re right: the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. I don’t think any of them are evil, even Wifetress. I can’t afford to think that way; it damages me inside when I do.

        *However* just because I feel this way doesn’t mean I’m opening the door to any kind of contact with any of them. Uh-uh. Evil or not, clueless or not, it doesn’t matter; interaction with his family and their endorsement of FW (which, I get it, he’s family/I’m not), is painful and I’m not having any of it. I wish them well. They were very kind to me when I was their DIL and I hope their lives are good ones; they are the family of my children and my children love them. I just can’t be a part of their lives *at all*; not if I want to stay sane.

        I always say that those I choose not to contact anymore isn’t because I want to punish them; it’s to protect me. That even goes for FW. I hope they have good, happy lives but they can all have each other if they do me the honor of staying far, far away from me (in the real world and online). Total separation of church and state.

        • My kids joke to put any non blood related partner on the outside when taking photos. They can be cropped out easily just in case. They’ve seen enough to warrant that set up.

          • This is such an important thing to do for family events and gatherings! There are so many lovely family photos I’ve seen that have been… well, ruined, because an unrelated partner/gf/bf (that later on were revealed to be… jerks) were also lovingly jammed in with the group. Some of these otherwise fantastic family gathering photos can never be hung up or glanced at again, which is a shame.

            Kudos and props to all photographers who take several sets of photos that foresee these kinds of future hurts: “Okay, now everybody! Everybody gather around Grandma! Hands on shoulders, everyone squish in now. Cool, cool, now just the Smiths*. Smiths only. Let’s just get the Smiths around Grandma now–nice, nice.” If that jerky XH takes off ten years later with a young girlfriend, I am not robbed of the opportunity to hang up a photo of my family the very last time we were all together to celebrate our Grandma’s birthday; I just file away the photo with ex-partners in it and hang up the photo that had the family in it. (Heck, if there’s time and energy and “Grandma” doesn’t mind, the photographer could continually widdle down the participants in the photo; maybe future me only wants to hang up a photo with just me and Grandma both grinning and flashing peace signs over her birthday cake.)

            However, there are family photos that can’t ever be hung up again because, for example, an uncle’s XW who, years after the photo was taken, left him and his children to chase strange and, darn it, she’s. in. every. single. photo. from that family session. (My mother sadly remarked, flipping through them a long time ago, “these are so gorgeous; it’s a shame we can’t hang any of them up.”)

            God bless the foresight of anyone who arranges and then further rearranges the participants in family photography. It’s appreciated.

            • Fourleaf,

              We have options to manage family photos with fuckwits in the frame. Actual photos, from negatives ? An Exacto knife or a smiley face sticker to erase them or cover their mug. Thank God for photoshop for digital images.

        • I agree with your assessment and appreciate your honesty. Evil, no. Dense and self-centered, probably. I am just glad that you had the wherewithal to turn around and leave once you realized the friendly tour was a lot more than you wanted to see!

          • Oh, I politely scooted out of there like mad once I realized the floor was made out of lava. I felt like that meme I’ve seen of Kermit the Frog where he’s “internally screaming” and I noped out of there with my paper-thin excuse (Oh my gosh, will you look at the time? I am running majorly behind schedule, so sorry) as fast as I could get the kids to put on their stuff and say goodbye-for-now to their grandparents.

            I do worry about the day when I have to figure out what to do when they pass away; they are not in very good health. I know that, no matter what I do, it’ll be seen negatively by FW and Wifetress, so I’m not worried about that anymore because that’s a foregone conclusion. I just want to be respectful and caring (especially to my children) without putting myself in a position where I’m going to be scrutinized, glared at, and gawked at (like if I tried to go to the funeral and sit quietly in the back row). I decided a while back that, when that day comes, I won’t go to the funeral (which would likely earn me vitriol from FW or other members of his family but whatever) and will, instead, send some really nice flowers and keep my distance. That’s the best I can think of for now.

            • Fourleaf,
              Flowers are the way to go.
              Also, I don’t think for a minute that FW’s parents don’t realize what he lost in you. They are stuck with him and have to polish his turd of a life and his choices. From your story it appears You are a very considerate and compassionate person and I am sure FWILs miss you. Your story has helped me today. Thank you for that.

  • Another thing to consider is that they are using the “friendship” as access into your world. Back in my marriage police days, I saw that my X-FW’s best friend was sending him screen shots of my FB posts (X-FW didn’t do social). That’s when I realized I needed to cut his family, friends – everyone connected with FW – out of my social media network.

    • I am very careful about what I post. I only post things that I don’t care if my ex wife sees them. I don’t care one bit if she sees anything I post. I did cut out some spies because I learned they had the same values of my ex.

  • Sit down and have a block party. Blockety block block. Block everyone who has not condemned him as an abusive lying cheater. Those are not your people.

    When I left Fuckface I lost all of the so called family friends, all of his family and some of my own. Three years later I know who has my back and it was never those people.

    • Oh yes, I highly endorse the block party. Block, block, and block some more. It brings so much peace.

      • I Stan this. With a nice glass of wine and Cee-Lo’s “f*ck you” playing in the background ????

        • The block party with music food and some music to make it festive

    • Block not just on social media but in every other way as well.

      Honestly, although I’ve told an in-law by marriage (the wife of x’s brother) that I don’t want to hear anything about him, she slips. Several months ago, she called and told me she was horrified that x-MIL texted a photo of herself with FW and wifetress. All were smiling. I know my SIL is “on my side” and can’t stand FW, but still…I didn’t want/need to hear that.

      Also, this SIL’s daughter is getting married early next year, and she mentioned that I would be invited to the wedding but not FW. Now, this is weird. It’s HIS side of the family. Also, despite what she said, I would guess that, in the end, family pressures will cause them to invite FW and wifetress.

      I’m done. I can’t imagine mingling with everyone on that side of the family. It really is sad because I do like/miss some of them. But, I know I need to protect myself.

      As CL says, “Shields up, Chumps!” Our sanity depends on it.

  • Maybe off topic, but I’m just anti-social media all together – never done it, never will. I always told my STBXW FW that Facebook was just a dating site for married people. Who TF would keep in touch with old boy/girlfriends once they’re married?! And, her FB profile looked like a damn profile, a bunch of glamour shots, no real family pics or relationship stats. I remember telling her to delete once early on when I started to be suspicious, and she said she would but that she really “needed it for work.” Later on I found out that’s where she initially contacted her fuckbuddy, someone she had dated before we married (the proverbial “one that got away” I suspect). Like I said, a dating site for married people!

    • I agree it iws a forum that can be used for good as well as unsavory practices. (not just limited to cheating)

      But, I like it for seeing family pictures, and keeping up with family. I have a cousin I talk to a lot, along with my best friend.

      My H uses it (my account) too. FB didn’t come online until several years after my D. I went to whores site because by then I had two young grandchildren and I was hoping to see pics I missed. I saw a couple pics; but not many. Her FB was a joke of Christian quotes, and memes about how great she is. Laughable.

      Once I realized that she was not posting much about my grands; I quit looking. My son said fw refused to be on FB , he liked his “privacy”. Lol. Had I been him, I wouldn’t have shown my face either.

      That has been years ago, since then I only went to her oldest sons FB page “once” last Jan, when fw died to see what he posted. The only thing notable was he misspelled my sons first name. After being their step brother for over 20 years, misspelled.

      I do agree that if FB is something that bothers, it is definitely better to just drop it.

      I know a lot of folks use Instagram now and tweeting. I don’t do either. Just don’t have the interest anymore.

    • Not on social media either. Love being anonymous. The way I look at it is if we weren’t friends in grade school/high school/college/former jobs then I’m still not interested in being your “friend.”

    • So true WUC. My FW had an old classmate from grade six who’d had a crush on him then contact, friend and flirt with him, knowing full well he was married. What kind of weirdo does that, and what kind of desperate for attention twit would put up with it? FW is certainly a desperate for attention twit who will take validation from any source. Apparently it’s quite commonplace to look up people you used to know a long time ago on FB. IMO they are trying to go look back to their youth because they are unhappy with their lives.

      No way am I letting old boyfriends, neighbors, classmates and colleagues look me up on social media. If I wanted them in my life they would be.

    • Wisedupchump,
      My FW also used FB to meet men. I am not on it so had no idea she was constantly posting glamour shots. There is no need for this. After the fact others told me “we thought something was up”. To quote Adam Sandler “news I could have used yesterday!”
      This is a good Ted Talk about the subject

  • I agree with CL (on this subject and everything else, but…). Legitimately asking for advice. My daughter is moving to attend university in the country where STBX lives. I am going to NEED them to support her at times. The extended family at first 100% supported me, but now years later they are accepting schmoopie while also being nice to me. I am sick over thinking about how this is all going to pan out, but I do not want my daughter to be adversely effected (yet again) but the adults in her life. Sometimes it’s not as simple to unfollow, no?

    • I agree, not that simple when kids are involved. Two of mine have broken with their father, and the tenuous FB connection helped me reconnect one with a cousin. Their father’s side of the family has made little attempt to stay connected to them, but I understand why they hesitate and I encourage the kids to reach out and find the sane members of their father’s family – there are probably a few. It doesn’t kill me to leave them on my friends list, I don’t post anything personal to friends overall anyway. And it may benefit my kids at some point.

    • Big City, I completely empathize with your situation. I immediately went NC with Cheating Bastard Ex and all the extended members of his family when I left.

      But his mother died recently, and my adult children would be traveling with him for the services. I knew I was going to have to be the adult in the room, and pave the way for my kids in order for them to avoid any awkwardness or discomfort during their stay. It would be the first time they would be seeing any of his family, and only a couple knew we were divorced. (Yep, he didn’t tell them. The only ones who knew were those who had reached out to me when he wasn’t responding to their calls or texts. So I had the honor of telling a couple of the siblings.????) Plus, he had chosen to tell his kids that their only living grandparent had died via a one sentence text as opposed to picking up the phone and calling them individually (or going to see them) as most compassionate humans would do. He was too busy out-of-town on another fuck fest to bother.

      So, I sent flowers of appreciation to the sister who had spent the last decade seeing to her mother’s care, spent that morning with both my children to be there as they mourned, and accepted calls and texts from his family, politely explaining that I would not be coming, but would appreciate their love and support of my children while they were there.
      I returned to no contact immediately after.

      I would suggest you reach out with a similar sentiment and explain that you will appreciate their support while your child is in close proximity. Make sure they know how to contact you in the event of an emergency, and leave it at that. I suspect they will understand and honor your request.

    • I see this as a great opportunity for your daughter to practice being a grown up and for you and her to begin to solidify a more mature relationship. There’s no reason, barring emergencies, why your ex-in laws need to act as liaison between you and your daughter. And one would hope that if your daughter was rushed to the hospital, her father would somehow reach out to you about it. If that isn’t an option, or even if it is, then ask her to place your name and contact information in her wallet, at her university, or wherever else to ensure you’re contacted.

      There’s no adverse effect there for her. Your daughter has every right to maintain a relationship with her dad’s side of the family, and isn’t it wonderful that they can (hopefully) be there for her as she adjusts to life in a foreign country. But, she’s a young adult and can maintain that relationship without your involvement, at all.

  • I don’t do social media, but Ex-Mrs LFTT did in a big way. Our kids found the way that she portrayed her new fantasy life with AP – and used them as unwilling participants in support of her “I am the Mother of the Year” narrative – very distressing. As a consequence, the kids decided that, while they couldn’t control what she posted, they could control whether they had to see it or not …. and blocked/muted her. They are also very careful about what they post about me on their social media, as they know that their mother has some pretty “stalkerish” tendencies when it comes to tracking what I am doing with them.

    I think that the lesson here – one that I’ve learned second hand – is that 99% of what Cheaters publish on social media is self-serving BS and is best ignored.


  • I was also married 20 years and I deleted everybody. I raised his youngest brother from the age 13 to 19 full time in my home. Did he or his wife even ask if I’m ok at any point? Nope. Whatever smear campaign he launched against me, it worked very well. Not a single person contacted me. I reached out to who I thought were our closest friends and I thought I had some support there but I had to initiate everything (there was never a single hey, how are you doing?) and I later found out the wife of that couple visited my city (alone) at least three times in the first year of my divorce to see my ex but didn’t bother contacting me. She used to tell me she didn’t care for him but he got along with her husband and she liked me so she tolerated him. LOL She’s probably fucking him. Probably been fucking him the whole time.

    If they aren’t contacting you, do yourself a favor and just block them now. I waited with a lot of them because I was hoping and that just hurt brutally. It’s not worth it. You’ll heal faster when you stop hoping they’ll give a shit. I know I did.

    • “I was also married 20 years and I deleted everybody.”

      Good for you, KP.

      I was married for 23 years, and not one of them reached out to me in any way.

      Social media is all such false crap anyway. I got off FB, after blocking the lot of them, because the temptation to look was strong, and what the hell for? Why stick a knife in yourself?

      I do have a Pinterest page, and Instagram, but I’ve never looked for fuckwit and his rat faced whore, and I never will. ????????

  • Beautiful. I had to block one of my sister-in-laws who was praising my ex’s co-cheater for his “kindness” to her. She bore witness to the suffering of my kids, and up to that point seemed empathetic to me. When I saw the post I blocked her. Later she came back with the old, “I don’t take sides…I want to be the safe, nonjudgmental place for everybody.” Yet, she and everyone in that family avoided me like the plague after that. Oh well. Next.

    • “I don’t take sides…I want to be the safe, nonjudgmental place for everybody”

      In other words, ‘I have no values or morals, people can do all kinds of vile shit and I won’ t judge’.

      Yuck. Totally vapid. ????

  • Avoiding people, places, things, situations, anything that rips the scabs off is ESSENTIAL.

    Is it healing, or is it hurting? Filter all decisions through that test.

    I think of all the smiling pictures and happy memories from my own life, pre-social media, that I now see as deceptive because I did not know that he had a secret double life. So even the pictures from my own life when it included him weren’t accurate.

    No one knows better than a chump that appearances are deceiving. Of all people, we should be the ones who regard all images of bliss as suspect.

    Social media is usually the polar opposite of truth in advertising.

    • “Avoiding people, places, things, situations, anything that rips the scabs off is ESSENTIAL”


    • “Social media is usually the polar opposite of truth in advertising.”

      Reading this, it’s just occurred to me that most ‘couple pictures’ are incredibly samey and posed to the point of parody. Exact same pose, exact same expressions, just in a different restaurant/bar/event. Usually with some generic, “love this man/woman”/”thank you for always being there for me” message tacked on for no real reason. As if the mindset is, “hey isn’t it convenient that just now I remembered that I love you now we’ve been presented with a photo opportunity in this funky new restaurant that might invoke jealousy in the wider FB/IG community? Wipe that mayo off your lip, dear, don’t fucking embarrass me, we need to look like we belong in Madame Tussaud’s if we want those politeness Likes.”

      None of them ever seem to be impromptu candids, as if they just love how that person looked in that moment. They’re just the same picture over and over again and the emphasis is more, “we go out and live our lives to what is perceived to be ‘the full'”.

      I feel like couples who have something deeper don’t tend to post very much at all and do post more candids (assuming they use social media to begin with).

    • Unfortunately just discovering this with my very recently ex-boyfriend. He was wrapping up his long, drawn-out divorce when we got together and was/is currently going through co-parenting with a fuckwit to the nth degree (court stuff upcoming, possibly never ending). It ended up being too much for me. I short-circuited not only trying to be there for him and his daughter (who is suffering her mother’s FOO issues, hence the latest in legal battles), but in having that all around me while trying to get to a place mentally/emotionally of having a life with someone again…particularly with my daughter alongside me. I am getting myself back into counseling, but he couldn’t stick with me through that or even make the correlation/understand why I was surrounded once again by pain and confusion. He is clearly still dealing with his own shit and has no room for empathy for me in my journey. I thought we would heal and grow together, but it can end up being such a different viewpoint and path, even with someone who experienced something so similar. The healing process is long enough without putting oneself in a position to pick at scabs.

      • I was taught, over the years, by both therapists I had over a period of many years…..

        1) do not date until officially divorced, at the earliest. Definitely avoid dating if anyone involved has not sufficiently ended and well past the previous relationship.

        2) do not bring your kids around anyone you’re dating until at least a year after divorce is final.

        To do otherwise is too confusing and messy.

        3) hardly anyone ever does this.

        I trust those therapists, agree with those guidelines, and follow them.

  • Haven’t been here or commented in a while but this is a topic I had some experience with.

    I didn’t unfriend my in-laws at first. I thought it would be hurtful. After a year when it became apparent that blood was thicker than water (none of them ever reached out to me unless it was to borrow money) I unfriended and blocked all of them. I then went on to unfriend and block anyone in the ex’s orbit.

    It was the best thing to do because it was the final nail in the coffin of absolutely no contact. I couldn’t see them and equally as important they couldn’t see me.

    I also have my privacy settings set to Fort Knox! No one can set up “fake” accounts and see my profile. It’s friends only and there is no one on my friends list who isn’t exclusively my friend.

    There is no way to move on from this shit if you’re still emotionally connected to it. Sometimes you have to have some contact if you still have minor children but that doesn’t mean you have to stay in contact on social media.

    I’m not on FB much anyway: I mainly use it to post funny or sports memes and keep up with my friends’ posts. It’s kind of a time suck anyway so I get why some people don’t bother. My best advice is to do what I did or stay off all together.

  • I had this same question and my answer was to simply remove myself from social media. That was 5 years ago and I haven’t missed it at all. If there’s anything going on in my circle of family, real friends, or community, they know to just tell me directly.

    Like my sister and I joke, does social media SPARK JOY?! If not, out it goes. 🙂

  • While never super close to my FIL and MIL, we had a mutual respect, they stayed with us when they visited, they were happy about our marriage, and seemed to really love me. I was very close to his sisters and brothers. Brother lived with us for 8 months while going through his own divorce – (he was a chump.) 15 years of family visits, holidays etc. I was ALWAYS there for any of them, any where. Any time. I told them all straight away when I discovered X’s newest friend. Yes, I too got the: “We love you! You’ll always be family! “
    With in 4 months of him moving out (and moving in with AP -THE SAME NIGHT, he took her to his family’s giant wedding for his nephew. Everyone was there, everyone accepted her. I saw photos of her sitting with my two former favorite brother – in – laws.
    It literally knocked me over.
    I deleted every one of them. Soon after I got off FB all together.
    I love that they can not see into my life more than anything.
    They should all be doubled over with guilt – and shame. But guessing not.
    Almost as hard as your spouse abandoning and betraying you , are all the “family and friends” you thought you had, that never checked on you, and accepted the awful homewrecking whore into what was once, my life.
    Block. Delete. Adios.
    People really do show you who they are when the “opportunity” arises.

  • The goal is to be meh, and it happened for me when I stopped looking. It took me some time to figure out what worked. I tried blocking and restricting which didn’t work. I’m too nosy! I deleted my accounts which got rid of the temptation. It was painful for a week (withdrawal), but I got used to it.

  • I got off of social media for safety reasons (there were threats being circulated by people in my town who were outraged by my ex’s crimes). I do not miss it at all. Not only because I don’t have to see any posts from my ex or his family, but I also don’t have to see any of the “perfect family, perfect life” pictures from other people. It greatly reduced the comparison anxiety I’d been experiencing previously, and enabled me to better engage in my real life.

    Now I think of social media like carbon monoxide: it gives you the impression of having social interaction, but it actually doesn’t fulfill those needs for true connection, and over time it will suffocate you. After experiencing life in the free air, I don’t intend to go back. If I ever did open new accounts, it would be solely for business and not for my personal life.

    • The comparison anxiety is real. Along with the overwhelming nature of a Facebook wall, I needed to stop looking at these pictures of happy families. There is a strange duality of being happy for other people and being simultaneously driven to sadness by their happiness when pondering your own life. Literally just had this happen and it culminated into a panic attack after my longtime friend’s 10th wedding anniversary party (they were married the year after I married ex FW). Without social media at least it’s not in your face, saturating you with these almost grotesque images of perfect happiness. It’s much easier to be happy for people living their best lives without tipping over from your own sadness in real life.

  • I am firmly in the no contact camp, you do really need to think of your sanity rather than offending ex family members. The day after D day, in my mental, completely unhinged state of mind I wrote to my Mother In Law to basically tell her the truth about her son but to also leave the door open for her to have contact with her Granddaughters. She did eventually write back to say her son was institutionalised after a long military career and he did love his daughters deeply. Well, obviously that bullshit didn’t sit well with me so have ditched the lot of them and feel quite liberated. I have come off all social media so no portal into my life and I have no interest in looking into theirs.

  • I had a similar experience with the successful smear campaign with in-laws. Few years later they completely cut off ties to him and called me because they were devastated they would never see the kids again. They apologized to me. I agreed to maintain the connection with them so the kids (9 & 10 at the time) could see their grandmother, aunt, and cousins. I also made it very clear and said to all of them…I don’t know why you would all of a sudden believe the shit he was spewing about me when you knew me. You should look at my actions not his words but I forgive you. Understand this, if you choose to have ANY type of relationship with him then you will never hear from me again. Then when he screws you again do not come crying to me because he won’t let you see the kids. They have chosen to have a relationship with the kids rather than him. It has been three years. Only 2190 more days that I will be completely free from him and most likely his family because the kids will be 18 and they can manage their own paternal relationships. BTW 2190 days is 6 years from today. It is my youngest’s birthday!

  • I have friends who are active on Facebook, and they have been after me for years to join. I have resisted. I worked on a computer all day and did not want to socialize on one. I do use email, and my phone. I text. Shocker, I call people I want to have a conversation with. Texts and emails are mostly business.

    I grew up without social media, and I am a private person. I do not miss it. I may be missing a gene in my DNA, but my kids use it, and I still don’t. I prefer face to face contact, or phone calls to talk to folks I want to talk to. I try, very hard, not to talk to those I don’t. I don’t like the idea of people “looking me up.”

    I stay in contact with an ex-sister-in-law, and sometimes her children. I stay in contact with some members of my family, and some old friends. My life is stressful enough without adding people I do not want to talk to into it.

    It’s your life. Why would you shop for pain? You do not have to conform to other people’s expectations, especially if you do not like them. Life is too short. Look for what brings you joy. Enjoy things as they come, but do not expect them to come. Be aware enough bad things will find you without your assistance.

    Your ex’s side of the family and your own family has some good folks, some bad folks — only talk to the ones you find worthwhile. Don’t worry about what they may say to others. Again, life is too short. Choose a lifestyle you have reason to believe will make you happy.

  • I deleted all social media. My mind was already a noisy buzz and these platforms added to that. I did this at first so that I didn’t see or read anything that may cause me more pain. As time went by I realised that I was a much happier and sane person not having this fakery in my life. In fact I live my life way more in the moment now a bit like when I was young and before the rise of social media. I will never go back to it. It gives me nothing. This is the only place I come to read. Everyone her understands and no one judges. It’s perfect. As for FWs family I cut them all loose. His parents were already dead. His sister made her feelings known when she helped him clear his stuff from my home. She then sent a stupid letter to one of my daughters (FW refused to meet her 3rd newborn because she wouldn’t meet his ho worker – you just couldn’t make this shit up could you!!) stating in letter how family is important and she wished she’d spent more time with her dater and she hoped daughter would meet with her and FW. Letter arrived on daughters birthday. Not once did she ask how her niece was and that what had happened was traumatic… Oh no she was the epitomy of a flying monkey. Daughters reaction was to laugh then place letter in the bin. So all his family are no longer in my life. Some aunts and cousins send Christmas cards but I don’t reciprocate. I can’t do the nicey nicey exchange because I NEVER want to EVER hear about him. Or see him. Or hear him. EVER. AGAIN.

    Hugs to all ❤️

  • My in-laws had always been difficult, and there came a day when I was ready to be free of that. There was a lot of spakling at first, when they so desperately didn’t want to face what he’d done and I was in more contact with them than before arranging FaceTime with them and the kids, pressured into gifts and extra communication for them, but none for me. I realized that they were enablers for ex-FW’s precious ego that needed constant stroking, and I didn’t need to be a part of it anymore.

    I saw blocking as a pause at first and need for peace from their “everything is great and wonderful” campaign, which was causing me pain. Now I’m so glad I took that space and mental energy back and was willing to protect myself over the need to play nice.

  • I was married 21 years to a serial cheater who finally decided the grass was greener at the neighbors house. In a nanno second I lost almost 2/3 of what i considered family. It was heartbreaking. One brother in law and 1 neice texted me to tell me how sorry they were and that they were going to miss me. My mother and father in law had always treated me like their own daughter and i loved them like i loved my own blood parents. I heard absolutely nothing from either of them, the year after the divorce i got a call at Christmas from my x mother in law wishing me a merry Christmas. I should have never answered the call. I have a very small family and my now XH has a very large family. I lost a lot. At first i did the Facebook thing too. It was heartbreaking to see pictures of xh and Schmoopie at family picnics and family poker nights. After the separation i was still pain shopping Schmoopies Facebook page and of course she didn’t block me so she could make sure i could see the happy smiling couple doing family things and riding on the harley and all the things i used to do. What was super painful were reading the comments. Not even 2 months after the separation all kinds of comments were on these pictures about how glad people were for them and how happy they looked together and how all the waiting was worth it
    My advice is BLOCK,BLOCK, BLOCK!! I couldn’t move on until I blocked everyone on every electronic device from that side of my old life!

    • Not long after D-day, seeing my husband who I was married to for the last 25 years posing with AP in their matching neon cycling ensembles is surreal. Reading the “cute couple” comments from people I thought were my friends was worse, further betrayal. It felt like a huge punch in the gut. Comments such as “cute couple,” you look so happy cheater, you can tell you’re in love by the way you look at her, so glad you found happiness.
      What was I? the queen of misery?
      Like you, that is when I blocked all mutual friends or anyone associated with the “cute couple.”
      I decided it wasn’t a loss it was more like trash taking itself out.
      Evidently they have more in common with the “cute couple.”

      • That was one of the most painful parts for me. Everybody being so happy for him for finally getting rid of me. My own sister showed me a picture of him and the adult baby making their relationship Facebook official and said she looked nice and they looked happy. I asked for a list of everyone who liked their new relationship status. She acted like I was crazy and wouldn’t give it to me. I suspected she was one of those people. I wanted the list to make sure they were all cut out of my life. Well, now she’s cut out too. I hope the Facebook likes of a pedophile and his girlfriend who dresses up like a toddler for him and pretends to be his daughter that he’s raping were worth her only sibling.

        But yeah, that part was brutally painful. Nobody gave a shit at all. Why did I waste my life with people who hated me?

  • Social media is fine if you can use it for your own healthy purposes, usually keeping some contact with people we don’t see often because of distance or time. But lots of people see it as a self-marketing tool, a medium for impression management. And people put way too much stock in who “like” what. That might not matter to us if we are happy, confident and satisfied in our own lives, if we are not caught up in comparing ourselves to others. I give FB maybe 10 minutes a day—send some happy birthdays, check recent posts, maybe posts some photos I took on a walk, etc.

    It might be less painful to start by “muting” the posts of anyone you truly care about and unfriending those who are and have been fringe players in your life. But I would recommend asking yourself a more strategic question: how much of your own personal life and information are you willing to share with maybe a thousand people? How much are you willing to see getting back to your X or the AP? How much time and emotion are you willing to invest?

    These are actually big questions and they relate also to the default many people have of allowing an X or STBX unlimited access to text messaging–it’s like allowing them to harass you on demand. We have this technology that lets people into our business but we aren’t required to permit access to anyone and everyone.

  • I’m rarely on Facebook other than to handle a page that I manage, but if I was, I’d definitely draw a line with his family. They enabled him and blamed me for the majority of the problems despite his significant mental health and addiction issues. They believed his stories that I was mentally ill. They told him that starting over in a new place was the answer to all our problems when literally NO ONE else thought that wise. They are not safe people, period.

    During the intake appointment, my attorney questioned me about how much I was in contact with his family at that point, and I wasn’t at all in contact. He said, “Good. Keep it that way. Afterwards, you can weigh things, but not now.” We didn’t go there again, but I gathered that he saw a potential for interference from them.

    I’m still not feeling it after three years. When my son talked to the youngest brother some months ago on a matter unrelated to me, the brother said in relation to what we went through, “Time heals all wounds.” Mmm…my sponsor in the twelve-step group I’m involved with once asked me under what circumstances I would talk to them. Of course, not if my ex was there, but yes, I’d talk to them. I’m very solid in what I believe happened and have related that to them before. If they wanted to deny that reality, I would end the conversation. However, it works better for them to deny what happened, so there it sits.

  • On d-day the first thing I did was text all of his family to tell them. Then I blocked everyone, including mutual and Switzerland friends. I also locked down all my social media, including removing any pictures of him. I am very careful with what I post publicly just in case someone has a burner stalker account somewhere.

    I admit that I do “pain shop” on him and his family. Although since I am truly at meh it’s not painful at all. I’m just nosy. (My bf says I should be a PI). In any case there aren’t many public posts. I do know that he’s engaged to the latest woman. I suspect that he posted it publicly in case I would see it and respond. I didn’t respond. In fact, hardly anyone liked or commented on the engagement pictures which I found to be funny. He only posted pics, didn’t even make a statement at all – like “I’m marrying the love of my life”. Nothing – no words at all. I kinda feel sorry for her since she’s not the AP and she got seduced like I did.

    I don’t recommend pain shopping, but I know I can handle it.

    I also don’t post any relationship info. There may occasionally be a pic with my bf hidden in a post, but it’s rare.

  • During the divorce I got of social media altogether. No matter how benign the things I put on there, my ex would find a way to turn it into a weapon (I post pictures of food I cooked – I must be starving our child since he wouldn’t eat that stuff! I mean, it got RIDICULOUS). And even though everything was set to super private, my ex had people spying on me. He even had schmoopie join some private, closed divorce support groups for the express purpose of stalking me, screenshotting anything I wrote, and then he tried to blackmail me with it (though she stupidly left her profile pic at the bottom of the screenshots, so I knew who it was who was stalking me – I told my ex he’d had her spying on me and he said “how do you know that?” and I said “because her picture is at the bottom of the screenshots!” and I described what she was wearing in the photo. He stammered and had no comeback for that – they really thought I was too stupid to figure out things like this, and I’m sure OW got a dressing down for being such an idiot as to not know how to crop a picture). I blocked and unfriended anyone remotely connected to my ex or OW, even though a lot were old friends, because I had no idea who was reporting back to him. I even blocked some of MY family members who were friends with my ex.

    After my ex died, I reconnected with his family (he hadn’t spoken to them in years, and consequently neither had I as he forbade me to, although I stayed in touch with his sister). They were so happy to have my son in their lives. Even though my ex talked shit about his family to my kid, my son is smart. On one of the first holidays we spent with them, my son said “daddy said you weren’t good people, but he was wrong”. I’d never said a word about it. My son only needed to interact with them to know the truth. So even though my son lost his dad, he gained two aunts, two uncles, two cousins, and a set of grandparents. They’ve all been really kind, and I realized the narrative my ex fed me (they don’t care about our son and don’t make any effort to see him) was all a lie.

    I did monitor ex and OW’s social media, for stuff for the divorce case, and I admit I pain shopped quite a bit in the early days, but I think it helped me. Partly because I got used to seeing them together until it no longer hurt (and helped me give up the hopium). Seeing how over the top they were about their relationship made me realize it wasn’t real love, and I saw a whole lot of parallels to my relationship with him. And seeing how OW was a shallow, vain, silly person who was a huge hypocrite (posting memes about kindness, and feminist posts about how women need to look out for one another, for instance) helped my self-esteem. I could clearly see she wasn’t “better” than me. She wasn’t even prettier than me. My ex cheating had nothing to do with my unworthiness, or anything to do with her “amazingness”, but everything to do with him needing whomever would give him the most ego stroking. I realized I didn’t want to be that person.

    Even now, four years later, I really only use Twitter. There are some lovely people on there. I don’t follow anyone I know in my everyday life. I discuss books and history and look at pretty pictures of old churches. My life is the better for stepping away from Facebook and the like.

    But yeah. Unfriend. Block. Don’t think too hard about it.

  • FW’s family has stayed in contact with me and is really unhappy with him. His brother reached out to me and my sons during break up to empathize. His and FW’s dad did the same to their mom (genetics?). The brother disowned the dad so FW cheating really upset him. They are including me in weddings, showers etc. it helps that they live 3000 mi away and I can phone it in. To your point CL, it may be time to let my sons carry the ball for the family. It is hard cuz I am godmother to kids and the only aunt they have known. I feel like I divorced him not the family. Collateral damage! Cheating and divorce sucks!

  • His family are flying monkeys (look this term up if you haven’t heard of it before).

    If nothing else, they’re now ACTIVELY aiding and abetting his impression management. Impression management being that he is now suddenly super dad and, ‘ooh look how happy all of us are in this photo, you’d be a miserable shrew to want to ruin this for me by holding me accountable instead of just eating shit’.

    You may make the rationalisation of, “maybe they’re just including her to smooth the waters, I don’t want to look jealous or petty” (and if you do think this, who cares how you look to these minnows) but either way their passiveness IS consent. They did choose a side and you owe them no more loyalty.

    As an aside, do you have any solid proof that they weren’t in on this affair? While he was lying, abusing and pissing away marital money, were they completely in the dark about this? Or were they just ‘being passive’ as they may say they’re being now?

    They’re dead wood and do nothing but invoke bad feelings in you. Get rid without explanation or regret.

    • I don’t think anyone knew. I think that there was a thrill to it for sure, and his “image management” is important. In reality, his family is not a close family. (Mine is). So – I don’t think anyone knew. His family are all pawns on his chessboard. Everyone is just a pawn, including our lovely children. Thank you Sally – and you are right, no regret. There wasn’t much in his family that is a loss.

  • Here is an exercise to do. Think about how many good things you get from Social media and then think about the negatives associated with it. Then ask if it is even worth it to be on Social Media. For me that would be a great big no! FB and IG are for posers! Get out and live life. Disclaimer: FW used FB and IG to communicate with APs

    • I do enjoy FB for a couple reasons – I am made aware of things happening in the community, schools district, and I maintain contact with lifelong friends ( who are not “posers”). I guess what this exercise has shown me is that I need to manage contacts / and the people who I am linked to. It’s not quantity / it’s quality.

      • Yep, create a fortress of a social media account, in terms of who you see and who sees you. I did it immediately after my ex and I split. I took the important step, also, of deleting all pictures and posts related to him. It didn’t go unnoticed by people, but by that time I had whittled down my “Friend” list to those who truly understand and support me. It’s life changing. I highly recommend this level of online insulation.

  • This is such a helpful post today. I have struggled with this one. Should I be the bigger person and make nice? Let bygones be bygones? I’ve always been an anti-drama person, try to avoid conflict if possible and keep the peace. I feel like my life has now become one massive soap opera of drama and chaos, could almost be funny if it were not so tragic. It’s so surreal!
    I don’t do social media other than to comment on my kids’ sites,I don’t post or look at any ex’s family posts, it’s still deeply painful to be reminded of the fallout.
    I blocked the ex’s family early in the process, at same time I blocked my phone from the ex( much to his deep frustration, he just hated that!)
    When it all blew up and he said he was leaving with Schmoopie, I quickly got uninvited to two pending weddings of SIL’s kids via a text that told me to just not come.
    He does all the cheating and I’m the one that gets punished for it. So crazy!
    I was way more involved in those kids’ lives than FW ever was, and I thought I was loved by his family too.
    Since blood is way thicker than adultery, I simply got tossed.
    My in-laws have been dead for sometime now, my two ex SIL’s I knew for some time were shallow takers anyway, so never a real deep genuine connection there.
    My ex BIL, I loved very much. I’ve known him for 44 years and we both cared greatly for each other, he’s the only real one of any of them.
    But I did cut him off too, as painful as that was to do. ( he will send Christmas cards, I don’t respond to them)
    I don’t want any part of my life getting back to my abuser and I don’t think it could be a real relationship with his brother anymore anyway. Lots of things have changed.
    He loves his cheating lying older brother, even if he doesn’t agree with what he’s done to his family.
    That doesn’t leave room for me, so I’m out and it really feels like the right decision, as painful as it has been to do that.
    My kids get all the drama now sadly, his family trying to guilt them into staying actively involved with them. ( they don’t want to)
    They stay polite texting, but when one of the selfish ex SIL’s wanted to get together for a drink when she had business in my daughter’s state, my daughter completely ignored that text, and that’s her Godmother.
    But she’s kind of shown her true colors to my daughter( she cares more about what her brother needs than his children) so my daughter wisely erected her own boundaries and put up her own wall.
    She ( ex SIL) tried to stick her nose in the middle of the shitstorm early on and INSISTED that my daughter meet his whore, when my daughter was in such an emotional crisis over it all and felt she was betraying me by doing that. ( mind your own business!)
    It’s been a lot to process for everyone! It actually was helpful for my daughter to realize not only is her father toxic, but his sister is equally,if not, more so.
    I knew that, but I’m glad she discovered that on her own without me telling her it was true.
    So, yeah, no contact with the whole family has been the best decision overall.

    • “She ( ex SIL) tried to stick her nose in the middle of the shitstorm early on and INSISTED that my daughter meet his whore, when my daughter was in such an emotional crisis over it all and felt she was betraying me by doing that.”

      Wow. She sounds extremely emotionally abusive. How dare she insist your daughter do anything at all, let alone meet her brother’s whore. I’d be so tempted to give her a well deserved bitch slap.

      • Totally agree! She needed a good bitch slap for sure, she’s next level toxic.
        I made a list of the good things that have come to my life post divorce and getting her out of our lives was a enormous bonus on that list! ????????
        ( she’s married to my cousin, unfortunately for him, who is a hell of a nice guy, idk how he has put up with her all those years, but he does work ridiculously longs hours, so I’m sure that has been his way to cope)

    • Hear hear! Good for you. I took the same approach, and am also in the middle of the years with my teenage daughter where he and his family embroil her in some of their drama. I hate it for her, but she and I talk a lot about tuning it out and choosing relationships that she wants to maintain into adulthood. And the older she gets the more she can make her own choices on where she goes and with whom. We’re all raising adults in the end, so helping them be good adult decisionmakers is the most important thing.

  • Ya my ex’s Schmoopie is the queen of FB narcissism! ???? She’s provided my friends & family with a lot of laughs of her “impression management” because we all know my ex (the fuckwit) will eventually morph back into the social recluse that he truly is. I deleted social media & unfriended the in-laws (so they wouldn’t be able to tell) while getting divorced. Now, I’m back on FB & I couldn’t care less what they think????????‍♀️

  • Since I consider social media a toxic environment to begin with, I’m biased towards getting off it. However, if you think you can handle that environment once you’ve healed a bit, you might want to just take your profile completely private for the time being to get a rest and reset. Then come back to it and decide who you will unfriend and who you will not. Anyone who is posting pictures of FW and schmoopie or commenting favorably on their stupid fake couple photos should be unfriended for the sake of your peace of mind. Think about who might be giving FW information on you, too. Those people need to go. Then you can safely make your profile semi-private, allowing only friends to see it.

  • Unfortunately or fortunately for me, my ex FW didn’t connect with me on FB. We were early adopters of it. He always told me it was because he didn’t trust it that much and he only used it to find some old high school friends. I believed him ????. I saw his FB opened once and I asked why he didn’t have me listed as his wife. He said it was because he didn’t trust FB. He had photos of him and our baby, but not one of me. After DDay, I found he’d been searching women on FB via a google search history. This was prior to a trip back to our home town. They are assholes. Enough said.

    • This was years ago, but XFW posted a beautiful picture of just the two of us on a family vacation. He had it set as his profile picture. It was up exactly one day, and then he switched it back to the profile pic of himself with our son. Mind you, we have a daughter too, but whatever! He actually deleted the photo of the two of us! And at this time, I thought we were very happily married!

      After D-day, I realized the whore I caught him out on a date with was one of his FB friends. They’d actually been meeting out for coffee (and more??) all the years after she quit working for the company he works at. And I have no doubt in mind that he had more female FB friends that he was seeing behind my back; he didn’t want to portray to anyone that he was a happily married man! He wanted to keep all his options open to anyone that would be a potential AP!

      I’m not sure if this was before or after the picture switch, but I saw in his FB messenger that he was talking to a female classmate from grade school. He hadn’t seen here since about 8th grade. They were going back and forth about fun memories from school. I honestly didn’t have a problem with that. But then one day he said to her, “I was thinking about you at work today. There! I said it!” I was floored and brought it up to him. He apologized and said he would stop FB. As far as I know, he did. That should have been a big red flag for me to GTFO!

      I also accidentally saw an email he sent to another former co-worker where he said to her, “I miss you so much!!!” I immediately brought it up to him and he said, “Don’t you miss your former co-workers?” He got me there. If I said, no, then it would seem like I was cold and heartless. If I said, yes, then I would be agreeing with him that it was okay that he was telling a former co-worker that he missed them. Couldn’t win either way.

      He had many, many female “friends” throughout our mirage (thanks VH!), so just as yesterday’s posts and comments said, it didn’t matter who he ended up leaving me for. All his female “friends” are just interchangeable narcissistic supply/ego kibbles for his insatiable need for ALL the attention ALL THE TIME! None of his “friends”/whores are better than me! The problem was never me! It was ALWAYS him! My mistake was not trusting my gut years (1992) the first time I thought he was cheating on me. And not trusting my gut the many times after that that I thought he was cheating in some form or another. I TRUST THAT HE SUCKS EPICALLY!

      As to the OP: I would not be FB friends with anyone from FW’s family or any of his friends! Unfriend them all and block if you’d like, but that doesn’t guarantee that they can’t make a fake account to at least see your profile pic. Maybe there is a way to change your settings so only friends or friends of friends can see you?

      THREE TIMES I got a friends request from the husband of FW’s cousin!!! The first time I messaged him, I said I had nothing against him, but did not want to be friends with him on FB. I gave my lists of reasons why. The second time he friend requested me, he messaged me and said his step-daughter was having a baby shower. Why the f*ck do I care?!!! This is a f*cking family that did not reach out to me to offer support or help during the hardest time of my life! Not one single person! I did not respond and deleted his friend request. A few years go by and once again he FB friend requests me. I did not respond, but eventually deleted it. He’s a evil f*cking flying monkey in my book! He must have done some heavy research as I went back to my maiden name and there’s no way he would have remembered my maiden name after all these years!! So to me that seems like stalking of some sort!! I only keep FB, because I have close family who live in two different states that I barely get to see. It’s my way of keeping connected and seeing family pics which I missed when I deleted my FB account after getting sent to FB Jail for a month. 🙂

  • I would unfriend anyone who treated me in an unfriendly manner. And that includes embracing the affair partner who blew up my family. This is a form of Switzerland friendship, where family members value gathering for holidays more than honesty, loyalty, and compassion (perhaps call them Swedish In-laws?).

    • So many people I thought were my friends have re-embraced the affair partner (who was also my friend). I heard a lot of “we love you both”. She’s a hometown girl with deep roots in our city and church so I get that it’s complicated. But really? She was partner to the destruction of two marriages. And you’re inviting HER to bunco night?? It’s effed with my head.

  • Definitely go no contact.

    My in-laws welcomed OW into their home for Thanksgiving 2 weeks after our divorce (it was a 2.5 month divorce and up until 5 months prior, I thought we were happily married). My ex brother-in-law and his wife disapproved of my XH’s relationship. However, his wife was addicted to the drama of the affair/divorce. During OW’s trip to the in-laws, XBILs wife snapped a photo of OW hanging on newly ex’ed husband. She sent it to me and said: “Happy Thanksgiving! I think she is ugly”. I was shattered to see her at the in-laws and with my XH. I sent a nasty text to ex-mother in-law and XH (he never admitted an affair). I had to block XBIL and his wife as she couldn’t keep my boundary about not talking about OW and XH. OW and XH filed and Injunction Against Harassment/Order of Protection in response to my text rant. Prior to the photo, I had been no contact with XH for 2 months.

    Fast forward 9 years, XSIL reached out to me via her sister on social media (XSIL is blocked). She told me that she and XBIL haven’t spoken to XH in years. She said she missed me and wanted to meet. I told her sister, thank you, but under advice of legal counsel, I do not think it is a good idea. I sent her the letter from my attorney (from 9 years ago) which stated that if XH’s family contact you, do not respond. The letter also mentioned the orders filed by OW/XH. I’m sure XSIL wanted to bring me up to date on XH’s and wifetress and baby. Yeah, I’ll pass.

  • The only reason I’m on social media of any kind these days is to read the Chump Nation page. On rare occasion I peek into the bowels of FaceBeast. A few days ago I did and came across the wedding announcement of a man – who I was never fond of – and a woman – who I really liked. They had an affair years ago (both married to other people – both have kids – both working at a religious institution). She divorced her husband and moved across the country. Then I heard that the cheating man and his still-then wife had moved near where cheating woman lived. Eh? Sounded sketch. Apparently it was. Now the cheaters are married. It was viscerally activating to see the two of them smiling, posting pictures on FB, arm-in-arm with cheating man’s family, his family “liking” their wedding announcement. Cheating man’s family are friendly, good-natured, seemingly compassionate people who adored his first wife. I was appalled that they were affirming the new marriage. Where is the sweet woman with whom cheating man had four children? Not in any of those pictures. It’s like she never existed. It pained me for her.

    Also noticed at the bottom of the cheaters’ wedding announcement a note that read “some comments have been blocked”. Maybe I’m not the only who was activated.

  • His family kept me, not him. He was a healthcare professional that became a late life drug addict with a howorker gf 33 years younger. I think they are embarrassed by him. Our children (all younger than the gold digger) are all successful, we are the ones invited to the weddings and baby showers. My SIL called and texted me during divorce to check on me. My daughters call their uncle for practical advice about subcontractors or opinions. His youngest brother offered to beat the crap out of them both (he was 6 when we were dating). So I’d say every situation is different….

    • That’s one of those relatively rare life-affirming situations where the disordered person’s family acknowledge the problem and try to stand in for his shortcomings with his own children. They sound look good people. Too bad that’s not more common.

  • The only people his family I’m still friends with is his sister-in-law and her daughters. They we appalled at his behaviour and my sister-in-law helped me though a mental health crisis when it all became too much. We catch-up in person or over the phone from time to time. Fuckwit never comes up in the conversation now. She says I’m a role model for her girls as I left the fuckwit and have my own awesome life.

  • I did it, and it felt good – unburdening myself. I haven’t even spoken to any of these people in two years. Not one person reached out to me. So I appreciate all the support here as I embark in a no contact / no reminder world!

  • I’m pretty sure that you can block individuals so that if their name shows up in a post – or they’re tagged in a photo – you won’t see it – and even better, they won’t see posts that include you!

  • They aren’t your family. Cut them all off including friends that don’t take your side.

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